The Catawba County Hornets dream of finally beating the rival Iredell Warriors on Saturday turned out to be a nightmare.
Turnovers plagued the Hornets (2-1) in their first loss of the season to the Warriors (1-2). The team trailed in the game 21-0 after two straight possessions ended in turnovers.
A quick interception thrown by Hornets’ quarterback Jamelle Jeffries a few minutes into the game gave the Warriors an early 7-0 lead.
Iredell’s Cam Simpson scored on a two-yard run to cap the drive, and the extra-point kick by Steve Mann was good.
One possession later at the 11-minute mark in the first quarter, the Hornets fumbled, once again opening the door for their rivals. The Warriors seized the moment, scored on a five-yard run by Roger Alexander. After another extra point, it was a 14-0 lead for Iredell.
The third possession by Catawba County netted no turnovers, but no points either. The Warriors took advantage of getting possession back, scoring on a 15-yard pass from quarterback Mike Allran to Brad Moser, which made it a 21-0 lead at the end of first quarter.
The Warriors added one more score in the second quarter on a 35-yard run by Tommy Walker to take a dominant 28-0 lead with time running out in the first half.
With two seconds remaining in the second quarter, the scoring shutout by the Iredell defense was broken. Catawba County wide receiver Demario Garvin scored on a 35-yard pass from Jeffries to cut the deficit, but the Hornets still trailed at halftime, 28-8.
While the Hornets surrendered two first half turnovers and 28 points, they played calm in the second half, allowing 10 points in the half.
Both teams struggled offensively in the second half, and it took until the end of the third quarter for either team to make any noise. Iredell broke that streak when Steve Wells broke free for a 35-yard run to give the Warriors a dominating 35-8 lead.
Iredell added one more score — a 25-yard field goal by Mann — to finish the game with 38 points.
Garvin continued his great game for the Hornets, scoring on a 49-yard pass from Jeffries to put the Hornets into double-digits on the scoreboard. Garvin finished the game with 10 catches, 96 yards and two touchdowns.
Despite Garvin’s effort, the Hornets were unable overcome the late start.
The Hornets will try to shake off their first loss and improve their record to 3-1 when they take on the Virginia Storm on Saturday at Westside/Jaycee Park. Game time is set for 8 p.m.